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captioning sponsored by macneil/lehrer productions >> ifill: good evening from the time warner cable arena in charlotte, where day two of the democratic national convention is underway. i'm gwen ifill. >> woodruff: and i'm judy woodruff. on the "newshour" tonight: the president arrived here in north carolina this afternoon. officials moved his speech tomorrow night back to this arena after forecasters predicted severe thunderstorms. >> ifill: we'll have highlights of the convention and the other news of the day ahead on tonight's "newshour." major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: ♪ ♪
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moving our economy for 160 years. bnsf, the engine that connects us. >> they can be enlightening or engaging. conversations help us learn and grow. at wells fargo, we believe you can never underestimate the power of a conversation. it's this exchange of ideas that helps you move ahead with confidence. because an open dialogue is what open doors. wells fargo. together we'll go far. and by the alfred p. sloan foundation. supporting science, technology, and improved economic performance and financial literacy in the 21st century.
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and with the ongoing support of these institutions and foundations. and... this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. >> woodruff: tonight's session started about an hour ago and the lineup ahead zeroes in on the president's economic record. two-time olympic gold medalist gabby douglas-- the 16-year old gymnast led the pledge of allegiance. >> i pledge allegiance, to the flag of the united states of america, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation, under god, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.
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( cheers and applause ) >> thank you! >> ifill: that was followed by saxophonist branford marsalis performing the national anthem. ray suarez is on the floor now among the delegates, where he's been each night this week. >> suarez: you know, gwen, one of the biggest events of this week is something that isn'tingt going to happen, the long-expected and long-planned-for stadium welcome for president obama tomorrow night where he would give his acceptance speech. because of threatening skies, that has been canceled and moved indoors to the arena where the rest of the convention has been held. well, it means some inconvenience for the people who were set to appear there. it means some inconvenience for the people who were staging the event, but the real problem is with the tens of thousands of people who gave tens of thousands of volunteer hours in order to qualify for a ticket to see the president accept the nomination of his party for another term as president. there's no place to put an extra
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60,000 people in this arena. and then, there's mundane considerations. how do you move the stage set inside? and where do you get a couple of hundred thousand balloons. there may be no balloon drop here. there just aren't enough balloons to be had. >> ifill: who do we expect to hear from tonight on the schedule? >> suarez: tonight as mentioned will be a lot of economics but also with a heavy doll up of politics, along with the leader of the a.f.l.-c.i.o., richard trumpica, and the founder of cared max, a virginia brewer, and we'll also hear from the heads of the senatorial and congressional campaign committees. the democrats are trying to take back the house of representatives and keep their hold on the senate, and of course, the main attraction tonight, former president bill clt. >> woodruff: thank you, ray.
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>> woodruff: with us tonight once again are shields and brooks. that's syndicated columnist mark shields and "new york times" columnist david brooks. david, we're looking ahead to bill clinton tonight. people, meanwhile, are still talking about the first lady last night. >> it seems to be unanimous. mark and i were not in the minority. pretty much a home run. i read some very conservative web sites -- fox-- it was bipartisan. american yiewt owe united. they thought she did a fantastic jork as did i. >> ifill: the fact that she did a fantastic job, mark, assuming we all agree, what difference did that mack in the long run? >> it makes a difference in one of the great advantages barack obama has had over mitt romney is one of likeability, americans identifying with him, thinking he cares and understands more their problems, what they're going dliew than does his opponent. the degree that that reinforces that is to obama's advantage and
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romney's disadvantage. >> woodruff: now that we've heard from the first lady, how do they continue to move this message ahead that this president has the right answers for the next four years? >> well, i think the big one-- the big dog tonight is william jefferson clinton, and i think he makes the case, i think, for the bridge to the-- at least the next fifth of the 21st century. and i think he-- but the key is the president. i mean, the president has to do it himself. he's the one that has to acknowledge the disappointments, explain it, and at the same time, lay on the what he intends to do different and better in the second term. >> ifill: is it fair to sawrnlg however, that bill clinton, part of his job here tonight is also to focus in the way that a lot of the democrats who spoke last night did in very overt ways and less overt ways on mitt romney. >> he crystallizes -- i i think the clinton speech is a little overblown. >> ifill: really? >> he's not a great speaker.
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he's very popular. but you can remember a great phrase-- >> ifill: oklahoma city. >> another that was a nonpolitical speech but i'll give you credit for that one. i think what he does-- and he did this in the ad which has been super effective for obama-- is crestalize. he takes issues we all are familiar with and futs in phraseology. i'm curious to see how he does that. the second thing is clinton changed the democratic party, temporarily, towards a centrist position. he balanced budgets and produced surpluses. it is not clear to me-- and this is a question for me-- does the rubin strategy apply to today's democratic party. i see very little sign that it does. >> woodruff: just quickly, mark, how much of clinton's popularity can be transfer to president obama? >> it isn't transferable. i think david is right, he does crystallize, but he makes the argument for obama better than obama does. he is a brill advocate, and i think he's a far better advocate
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when speaking for somebody else than he is on his own behalf. he is not eloquent but he is critizealizing. i did not hear a lot of crystallizing in tampa. maybe i missed it. i think crystallizing is in rare, rare supply this campaign season. >> ifill: we know what to listen tonight from both of you. and we'll be back with much more convention coverage, all that after the, news of the day. here's kwame holman. >> holman: republicans today offered their own critical take on the democratic convention. in idell, iowa, vice presidential candidate paul ryan said tonight's main speaker former president bill clinton will try to shift attention from mr. obama's economic record. >> we're going to hear a lot of things in charlotte, but we're not going to hear a convincing argument that we're better off than we were four years ago. we're going to hear from president clinton tonight in charlotte. my guess is we'll get a great
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rendition of how good things were in the 1990s but we're not going to hear much about how things have been in the last four years. >> holman: meanwhile republican presidential nominee mitt romney continued debate preparations at a private home in vermont. however he took a quick trip to an appliance store in nearby lebanon, new hampshire, where he spoke with supporters about the needs of small business. wall street hesitated today, after a profit warning from the shipping giant fed-ex. the company said it's being hurt by a slowdown in business-- the latest sign that the global economy is dialing back. that was enough to keep stocks in check. the dow jones industrial average gained 11 points to close at 13,047. the nasdaq fell five points to close at 3,069. the passage of hurricane isaac has exposed oil from the 2010 spill, along the louisiana and alabama coastline. b.p. acknowledged today that the oily tar came from its record- breaking leak at a gulf well site. the tar balls and mats had been buried under sand since then,
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but re-appeared after the hurricane caused severe beach erosion. louisiana has closed one stretch of beach and restricted fishing. the government of syria came under new pressure today from two former allies. turkish prime minister recep tayyip erdogan accused the syrian regime of terrorism. he also criticized the united nations for not doing more to stop the killing of muslims. >> ( translated ): the regime has become one of state terrorism. it is now in that situation. since march 2011, the number of those who have been massacred and martyred in syria is now almost 30,000. in syria, the massacres that are empowered by the indifference of the internal community, are continuing increasingly. >> holman: in cairo, egypt's president mohammed morsi also denounced syria. he called again for president bashar al-assad to step down. meanwhile, "the new york times" cited reports that iraq is again
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allowing iran to use its air space to fly weapons to the syrian regime. the iraqis had shut down the air corridor earlier this year, under u.s. pressure. a former police chief who touched off a major scandal in china has been charged with defection, taking bribes and abusing his power. state media announced the charges against wang lijun today. in february, wang briefly took refuge at a u.s. consulate after being demoted as police chief in a city in southwestern china. that led to the ouster of bo xilai-- his former boss-- as communist party leader there. bo is still under investigation. last month, bo's wife gu kailai was given a suspended death sentence for the murder of a british businessman. in afghanistan, the military announced today it has arrested or expelled hundreds of soldiers, as part of an effort to stop so-called insider attacks on foreign troops. the attacks come as the u.s.
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tries to continue its plan to transition out of afghanistan. margaret warner has the story. >> warner: on a pre-convention swing through virginia yesterday, president obama again touted his plans to end the afghan war. >> this november you get to decide the future of the war in afghanistan. by the end of this month i will have brought home 33,000 troops. ( applause ) i've said we will end this war in 2014. >> warner: but a linchpin of that promise-- to train afghan forces to take over the fight-- faces a new challenge. 45 nato troops have been killed this year by afghan troops-- 15 just last month. all this, just two years before a planned hand-over of security to full afghan control. u.s. and afghan officials have vowed to fix the problem. and in kabul today, a defense
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ministry spokesman said hundreds of afghan forces have been fired or detained for showing links with insurgents. >> all the afghan security forces were ordered to use all their resources in hand to prevent these kinds of incidents. the afghan defense ministry with the help of international community will follow this matter by exchanging intelligence information. >> warner: and last weekend, the u.s. military suspended training of 1,000 new recruits to special village-based afghan local police units being tutored by american special forces. u.s. army lieutenant general james terry said today about a quarter of the insider attacks can be blamed on insurgent infiltrators or their sympathizers. the rest he said stem from personal vendettas and cultural miscommunication. >> we also understand that a lot of grievances and dispute resolutions are done, frankly,
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at the barrel of a gun out there. what we are moving toward and continue to train toward is that you've got to understand the sensitivities out there. >> reporter: though the u.s. is re-vetting all 16,000 afghan local police forces, it's unclear how many of the total 350,000 afghan troops will be re-screened. for more on this, i'm joined by john nagl-- a retired army lieutenant colonel, and veteran of both iraq wars. he's commanded u.s. trainers of both iraqi and afghan forces. and, john nagl, welcome. >> it's good to be back. >> warner: it's not only president obama who has embraced the 2014 deadline. after initially criticizing it, mitt romney said he would meet it, too. what do the problems say about the feesibility of getting all u.s. combat forces out by then? the core of the exit strategy which, you're right, there's no political disagreement on this. the republicans and democrats agree with president karzai of afghanistan's assertion that all american combat troops should be out of afghanistan by the end of 2014, but that depend on afghan security forces being able to pick up the load with the
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assistance of american and nato advisers. that relationship between the american advisers and the afghan troops, trust is absolutely essential to that working out. and so these specific problems with the afghan local police are not strategically decisive, but the relationship between american advisers and afghan troops, not just through 2014 but for probably a decade afterwards, that really matters. >> warner: based on your experience what, are the difficulties training indigenous forksz especially so quickly, so hugely. i mean it's gone from 100,000 five years ago to 350,000. >> so the basic problem in afghanistan-- there are many-- one of them is that we're working in a country that's really been devastated by 30 years of war. so the human capital really isn't there. in iraq, the soldiers knew how to read. they didn't know how to fight. in afghanistan, the soldiers know how to fight but not how to read. and unfortunately, it's hard tore teach people to read than
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it is to teach them to fight. we're struggling with basic human infrastructure problems. the other big problem is we took our eye off the ball in afghanistan for so many years while we were focused on vawk and have been playing catch-up the last couple of years and as you rush to build a force in a very short period of time, some bad apples slip through, and we're seeing some of that. we're also seeing continually cultural connection problems. so americans, even after 10 years working in this country, burning korans, american marines, desecrating taliban corpses, and that sort of cultural conflict and tension does erupt into violence in this kind of society. >> warner: you mentioned the iraq war. is there any precedent for occupation force, a force like the united states, training up such a huge endijinous force so quickly, in modern warfare? >> we tried to do similar things in iraq, actually, after quite cleverly disbanding the iraqi
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force we decide that was a bad idea and decided to rebuild it. general petraeus worked hard in that effort to rebuild an iraqi force but he was working from a much larger force than had previously existed, a much better trained force. >> warner: and as you said they could read. >> and they could already read. no one, i don't think, has ever tried to build a force this quickly in history from such a stunted base of human capital with such literacy problems, basic etication problems. so it's an enormously difficult task we've set for ourselves. >> warner: will hitting the pause button, what they're doing on the training of some of these, especially local police, is that going to enable for a month or two to solve the problem? it sound a lot more deep-seated than that? >> we won't solve the problem. but we'll mitigate-- we'll find some of the worst actors inside the afghan local police, and they will, over time, spread out and lookt afghan national army, the afghan new hampshire police, which have been raised over a
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longer period of time and have been more carefully vetted. in november i was working with some of the afghan local police. they're a pretty rough crowd. they do need-- it's a very locally raised force. very brave american special forces troops but they're not strategically decisive to the fight. they're an additional layer of protection for kabul for the core of the afghan government. but we can slow down with them. the real problem would be the afghan national army had real infiltration problems. >> warner: so bottom line, the american people hearing this campaign conversation, can they conclude that u.s. combat forces will come home by the end of 2014? >> they can certainly conclude that, but they should remember american combat advisers are going to stay in afghanistan for at least a decade to come. they will be exposed to combat. we will continue to lose some american forces in an effort they believe is worth the price
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for american national security but that is going to continue to come at a price displarg at a cost. john nagl, thank you. >> thank you, margaret. >> holman: those are some of the day's major stories. now, back to gwen and judy in charlotte. >> woodruff: and we're back overlooking the democratic >> suarez: i'm with mayor anthony fox, the mayor of charlotte, north carolina, the host city. and, mayor, the meteorologists have given us some complicated news. it's making convention week a little difficult for you guys. tell us more. >> well, look, we have to be concerned with public safety. any event in our stadium would have requiredded people to be in lines for self hours, in all likelihood. and with the threat of thunderstorms, it made sense to cancel the event over at the bank of america stadium. it's disappointing for many of the people in north carolina but we have to do what we have to do. >> suarez: did you wait till
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the very last minute to get the best weather forecasting advice you could before pug the trigger on the cabs cancellation? >> i think the campaign took enormous pains to wait out the scenario so they could make the best call possible. obviously, it could have made a decision several days earlier. but wanted to wait it out to make sure the forecast really did call for those type of threatening thunderstorms. so we got the threat, and they made the call, and we're going to make the best of it displai now, mayor, of the many thousands of people who will be disappointed, there are some people to worry about. these were volunteers who had given of their time in order to receive that ticket. not exact let's people you want to make mad at you this close to the election day. >> i think people understand mother nature, and the reality that the campaign has a vested interest in making sure people are safe. i mean, if something had happened, and they'd gone ahead and there had been some kind of disaster associated with the
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thunderstorms, we would not have been able to forgive ourselves. i think one of those things. we have to go with it. on the other end of it, the president is doing a conference call with those affects tomorrow and he's also pledging to have an opportunity for all of the folks that were planning to come tomorrow to soo him between now and election day. >> suarez: so he will make another appearance here in charlotte, maybe to give them another shot at the stadium? >> he's looking to find ways to get people engaged and have another opportunity, yes. >> suarez: mayor anthony fox, thank you. >> thank you. >> there has been so much recurring debate about weather but another policy recurring debate has been auto bailout or auto rescue? it dpebdz which party you belong to which one of those terms you embrace. democrats tonight the make the case that the president saved jobs. we're diswroind by two of them, michigan senator carl levin, and tim ryan, a member of the house from ohio. both of you come from districts representing auto workers.
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had term do you use, senator? >> we saved the auto industry. the president helped save the auto industry. it was critically important that that be done. a million jobs have been saved. no auto-producing country in the world did not support its auto industry during this recession. the idea that we would let it go under and the romney statement, "let detroit go bankrupt," his definition of bankruptcy meant real bankruptcy, not just restructuring. it's going to hurt him in michigan and ohio what he has said about letting the auto industry go under. i think it will hurt him in the country. i find the reaction to that slogan-- imported from detroit-- having an amazing impact everywhere in the country, by the way. when that commercial hit that chrysler put on, it brought pride-- not just to michigan, not just to ohio. i'm telling you, i found it all over the country.
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>> ifill: congress, i want you to ask you to tell your story. >> it's an amazing story. three shifts there. they started making the chevy cruise which is selling like hotcakes all over the globe and just last week got an announcement that general motors is going to invest another $200 million in the lords town plant, which is going to solidify the next generation of cruise to be in northeast ohio. 4500 jobs, and that's not even talking the supply chain, as want senator knows very well it's seat manufacturers, the trucking company, the logistic companies. many of those are good-paying union jobs so it has been a huge success story and one of every eight jobs in ohio is directly or indirectly related to the auto industry. >> woodruff: senator levin, i wanted you to go back to what you said about mitt romney. he said he want a managed bankruptcy, and he said that's what he recommended, and he said president obama followed his advice and that's what happened.
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>> president obama did not follow his advice. as a matter of fact, if he followed romney's advice it would have been go to the private sector and borrow your way. g.m. could not, chrysler could not have borrowed from the private sector. credit had been stopped up. and so they had to have the government guarantees, the government loans for this to have worked. romney can try to fiddle around with word if he wants to, but the rhetoric he used and the position he's taken is a very anti-manufacturing position. it's an antigovernment partnership position with an auto industry but it's more than oughtoze. it's manufacturing in america, made in the u.s.a. he doesn't care. he has spent a good part of his life offshoring, working with companies and his hedge fund to ship jobs overseas. he doesn't care if jobs go overseas. he's helped send jobs overseas. >> woodruff: congressman ryan, how do you see this question of what governor romney says about what actually happened? >> well, he was on the wrong side. he got caught. he was in a republican primary. he's trying to appease the tea
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party. his life has been based on these kind of decision of not caring. and it took action by the government, and he's representing a very antigovernment wing of the party, which is an extreme wing, and when you look at the families that are there working, the tax base that's now established in ohio, it's not a coincidence. for john kasich to address the nation and not even mention the auto bailout shows how politicized this has actually become. >> ifill: one of the stories that came out of tampa last week was the constant conversation about what the president had not done. even on the floor last night, we heard speakers say the sto hasn't opinion told. on the case-- specifically on the case of the auto rescue/bailout, where have the unions been in this argument, the people who could tell the story? >> where the unions have been is very strongly supporting what president obama did. and it was mixed advice, by the way, in the white house. there is a fear that people might hold it against him that he was going to help a private
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sector industry survive. and there's a philosophical opposition in the republican party, now dominated by the tea party, to have a government partnership in the private sector. but in a global economy, you better have a partnership in the private sector or else you're not going toic mait. >> ifill: what do you mean by mixed discussion in the white house? >> there was apparently debate in the white house, according tie number of books, as to whether or not the president should make the decision he ultimately did. he made a tough call to put the government in a partnership position and it has paid off handsomely with millions of jobs in america. >> i think it's important, too, just to say it was not politically a popular decision to make. it was balm-motors, it was government motors. it was a tough political expawlz i think in these times we need a leader ready to make the tough calls. here i am in my district with 4500 jobs in the supply chain because the president was willing to read. >> by the way, no relation to paul ryan?
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>> i traced it all the way back to the mother land, i'm clear. >> woodruff: what about the broader republican argument the president has done enough to support small business and that's why we just don't have the job growth we should be having? >> come to ohio. you'll see we have have very low unemployment in part where auto is and the suppliers i mentioned, many would be considered small business and the restaurants, the good italian food in northeast ohio, they're all doing very, very well because of that auto rescue bailout package. and new england to, that the investments he's making in education, the tax credits, right down the line that wore in the stimulus package that we need to continue, have all been benefitting the-- make work pay, foargz. all of these things have benefitted small businesses. >> woodruff: all right congressman tim ryan, senator carl levin. we thank you both. it's good to have you with us. >> great to be with you. >> thank you. >> woodruff: in the hall are about 800 latino delegates-- the highest number attending any presidential convention.
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ray suarez looks at the effort to win latino votes this fall. >> suarez: a young mayor becomes the first latino to keynote a democratic convention. >> my grandmother spent her whole life working as a maid, a cook and a babysitter, barely scraping by, but still working hard to give my mother, her only child, a chance in life, so that my mother could give my brother and me an even better one. >> suarez: last week in tampa, a young u.s. senator became the first latino keynoter ever at a major party convention. >> my dad used to tell us: "en este pais, ustedes van a poder lograr todas las cosas que nosotros no pudimos." "in this country, you will be able to accomplish all the things we never could." >> suarez: that's no coincidence. the 2010 census counted more than 50 million latinos in the united states. new mexico's former governor, bill richardson, who ran for president himself in 2008, says
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a threshold has been crossed. >> we're the real deal now. we've been the sleeping giant, but we've woken up, just because of our numbers. >> suarez: turnout is key. on average, latinos have lower incomes than other americans, lower education levels, and are younger than other americans. that fits the profile of all of which are part of the profile of non-voters. >> i think the challenge for the president and the democrats is to have at least the turn out they had four years ago, for any democrat to be elected president, you need 65% of the latino vote, if you go under, you are in trouble. >> suarez: the governor is relieved marco rubio isn't the g.o.p. vice presidential nominee, and that a close election goes to the president. today first lady michelle obama visited a gathering of latino delegates and elected officials. >> all of our ciz deser

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WETA September 5, 2012 6:00pm-6:30pm EDT

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